Blog: Julian Rapp Solo Show at Openhouse Gallary
Sure, it’s illegal to throw an art piece up on a wall without a permit or even permission. But without the brave and innovative artists who choose to defy the law we wouldn’t have ever heard of the likes of Basquiat, Banksy, and Neck Face. As you walk through the streets of Manhattan and Brooklyn you may have seen another artist’s vision displayed on lamp posts, walls, or even construction sites. It’s “Robot” by the highly talented Julian Rapp and it is nearly impossible to miss because of its unique and friendly boxy shape and bright red heart inside the figure. And thanks to the great folks at Streetwater, Culturadar, and MPISA, Julian Rapp’s work is on display indoors, legally. The LocalBozo crew headed to the always creative Openhouse Gallery’s Nolita space on Broome Street to check out Rapp’s solo show and party where over 50 paintings on canvas would be on display.
The packed crowd walked the space taking in each piece sipping beers and wines, while being able to chat with the artist himself. It was a great dynamic to observe many art fans and newbies alike approaching Rapp to congratulate him and even ask questions about the specific pieces they admired. Openhouse Gallery’s Nolita space on Broome Street is perfect for this type of pop-up gallery. It’s huge white space can hold numerous pieces and people. Pair that with a stereo blaring out cool tunes and an outdoor area to hang out and you really have a laid back spot to take in and appreciate art without any of the stuffiness usually associated with galleries.
And just like my fellow partygoers, there were certain pieces that stood right out as favorites. As a street artist, Julian Rapp has his own heroes, ones that motivated him to get into the game. One of these forms of inspiration was graffiti forefather, COPE2. The subways were COPE2′s canvas and the man grew his legendary career tagging them with his signature handle. It was therefore a dream for Rapp to finally collaborate with COPE2 on a piece that perfectly blends both of their distinct styles. The combination of acrylic, spray-paint, and newspaper on canvas titled “COPE (Throw-up)” works brilliantly to unite these two distinct street art generations.
The “Robot” piece was shown in various forms throughout the gallery much like it would appear outdoors throughout the boroughs. I spoke with Julian during the party about this, and he immediately pointed me in the direction of “Central Booking.” This acrylic marker collage on canvas works as a companion to “Robots,” and explains how Rapp was arrested while putting up these much talked about pieces. I loved that he would connect his work in such a way, where a story about his life can unfold before your eyes.
If you have ever stopped for even a second to admire a piece of street art you need to head over to Openhouse Gallery on Broome Street. Today, (8/30/12) is the last day to check out Julian Rapp’s solo show- so make your way over to the gallery’s website for more details. Julian Rapp’s pieces are also on sale through his website as well. Take a look for yourself and see what strikes your fancy.
- Jay Rubin